Judge Strikes Down New York's Large Soda Ban

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

It’s the policy that drew comparisons to over-bearing parenting and prohibition: Mayor Mike Bloomberg’s large soda ban.

It was scheduled to go into effect beginning today, but before it could, New York Supreme Court Judge Milton Tingling struck it down yesterday afternoon.

The ban would have prohibited the sale of sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces at stores, restaurants, and food carts regulated by the city. Violating the policy would have resulted in a $200 fine.

Now that it’s been struck down, some New Yorkers are rejoicing, and others are wondering why it received so much opposition in the first place.

Ronald Bayer is a professor at the Center for the History and Ethics of Public Health at Columbia University. He thinks the judge made a mistake in striking down the soda ban.

But Georgianna Donadio thinks the ban would not have worked. She's a behavioral health researcher and educator and the author of "Changing Behavior."


Ronald Bayer and Georgianna Donadio

Produced by:

Kristen Meinzer

Comments [3]

Randy Johnson from Graham, WA. USA

Mayor Bloomberg has the right idea, but the wrong approach in my opinion. The problem isn’t that people can buy 32oz soft drinks. The problem is that 16oz drinks don’t cost roughly half as much as 32oz drinks. In fact most menus look something like this: 16oz-79¢, 20oz-89¢, 32oz-99¢, 64oz-$1.19. If you don’t buy the biggest thing on the menu you feel like you’re getting screwed, so you buy it, and you drink it, and you get fat. Don’t ban large drinks. Just pass a law that says you can’t rip people off for buying small drinks… “The Petite Drinkers Protection Act.” Big drinks will cost a little more and small drinks will cost a little less, and everybody wins.

Mar. 13 2013 08:51 PM

Do what one wishes but do not expect me via tax supported mechanisms such as medicare, medical, even private medical insurance to bail out those who have
medical conditions which could be tracked to individual behaviors.

I think it is clear that in the NY case 'sugary drinks' not to mention aspartame spiked beverages which contribute to deleterious health consequences.

Anyone who cites individual liberty must also accept individual responsibility and assume the consequences.

Mar. 13 2013 01:02 PM
Angel from Miami, FL

I am an addict... to Coca Cola (and Mountain Dew). I can only drink a regular can, glass bottle, or medium cup if it's from a soda fountain before the high fructose corn syrup starts to make me irritable, sweaty, and drowsy. The doctors say I am not diabetic and foods with regular sugar don't wreak havoc on my system. But an ice-less glass of Coke, fizzing and popping, is something I have trouble walking away from. Sometimes it's my only friend.

I know what the mayor is attempting to do. But he can't save people from their overindulgence.

Mar. 12 2013 10:34 AM

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